Alec practices in the field of EU and UK competition law, working on cartels, dominance, mergers, and state aid, as well as the control of foreign direct investment and EU law more generally. Over the past three decades Mr. Burnside has played key roles for leading corporations, global industries and governments on issues arising across a broad spectrum of industries, including consumer products, energy and natural resources, financial services, manufacturing, military, pharmaceuticals, technology, telecoms, and transport and logistics. He appears before the European Commission and the UK’s Competition & Markets Authority, and in court appeals from their decisions, and is admitted to practice in both England and Belgium.
He is a noted commentator, inter alia co-authoring the Dechert Antitrust Merger Investigation Timing Tracker (DAMITT), which is the leading source of analysis for significant U.S. and EU antitrust merger investigation and litigation trends. Alec has been widely published over many years, actively advancing law reform initiatives and exploring new dimensions in competition law. Currently he is particularly invested in the themes around Big Data and the tech industry, as well as antitrust and sustainability, focusing also on the new EU FDI regulation.
Recently clients noted Mr. Burnside as "one of the icons of the competition Bar in Brussels" because of his "strong analytical skills and intellectual curiosity." (Chambers Global 2018). Mr. Burnside has been recognized and recommended over many years as a leading lawyer for competition law in publications such as Chambers Global, Chambers Europe, Legal 500 EMEA, Global Competition Review, International Financial Law Review, and Best Lawyers in Belgium. He was named a “thought leader” in competition by Who’s Who Legal in 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021.
Mr. Burnside leads Dechert’s cross-practice Brexit Task Force, comprising partners from across the globe and disciplines including antitrust, corporate, tax, employment, financial services and investment management, IP and data protection, litigation and international arbitration. The purpose of the task force is to lead the firm’s work on the implications of Brexit for Dechert’s clients.
Prior to joining Dechert, Mr. Burnside was resident in the Brussels office of another international law firm where he served as a partner in the antitrust practice.
- Aer Lingus on its merger with IAG, its defense of successive hostile takeover bids by Ryanair and appeals in the EU's General Court, as well as UK investigations into Ryanair's minority shareholding in Aer Lingus and related UK appeals.
- Aer Lingus in relation to Ireland’s air passenger tax and associated state aid proceedings before the European Commission and European Courts.
- Deutsche Post DHL as a third party in relation to the prohibited UPS/TNT merger and the FedEx/TNT merger, and on many acquisitions and other investigations, including international removals and state aid at Leipzig airport.
- Getty Images and a number of other companies in the IT and media sector, in relation to the European Commission's investigation of Google's abuse of dominance in search on desktops and mobile devices.
- A Japanese capacitor manufacturer in relation to the Commission’s electrolytic capacitor cartel investigation.
- Monsanto in relation to merger proposals with Syngenta and Bayer.
- The European Commission's investigation into alleged manipulation of pricing mechanisms on crude oil and derivative products.
- Mergers creating BAE Systems, BHP Billiton and GlaxoSmithKline.
- British American Tobacco on acquisitions, including privatizations in Italy and Turkey.
Includes matters handled at Dechert or prior to joining the firm.
- University of Cambridge, Downing College, -, 1982
- College of Law, London, -, 1983
- Institut d’Etudes Europeennes, Brussels, -, 1984